This article, Big Three, is still being written by its owner Lither. They apologise for the inconvenience.
|The Big Three|
Each corporation's logo
|“||Gentle competition is necessary for the survival of the economy.||”|
–Ex-Presidente Admint Toll
The Big Three, as they are informally known, are three corporations that dominate nearly every aspect of life in Central America. Believed to store weapons of mass destruction independent of the government.
After the Nicaragua Disaster, as Toll referred to it, he saw issues with state-backed monopolies and intended to diversify his economy and introduce competition by splitting up the current economic monopoly into three different companies in constant competition with each other to maximise efficiency. The three companies formed were called Ladolt Incorporated, Pule Corporation and Shyom Industries, named after the three oligarchs and owners, Ladolt Mint, Barnmuch Pule and Byres Shyom, then-loyal nephews of Admint Toll.
Each giant corporation inherited equal sections of every economic production within Central America, and were subsidised to ensure they could compete in each field, but almost immediately they began to take on different methods. Pule Corporation began manufacturing high-tech extremely valuable products intended for the wealthiest of the world, while Shyom Industries began mass producing practical goods at such low quality and cost to be guaranteed a profit, primarily finding consumers among the extremely poor workers of Central America. Ladolt Incorporated, however, manufactured middling quality goods aimed at proletariats who enjoyed pretending to be bourgeois. Despite this, the economic output made leaps under the Big Three, and Toll considered it proof of the superiority of his system. Broadly, this was true.
The Big Three quite clearly hold the power within Central America. Despite the anocratic political system, the Big Three together own the majority of Central America. The only major service provided by the government is national defence and the court system, with even the police forces owned by the Big Three and under fierce competition for most number of arrests each year.
Central American Justice
The justice system is horribly twisted beyond recognition.
The police themselves after selling out were rapidly militarised and could best be described as three private armies. Officers receive bonus pay for making arrests with no penalties if the criminal is living or dead, and so the police themselves are willing to use lethal force with even the slightest provocation. In addition, police forces are sometimes used in attacks against prominent consumers of competing companies. Though that qualifies as murder and thus is illegal, owning the police force prevents their members from being arrested except in bloody battles with competing forces, and no Presidente will admit that there's any problems with the system.
Due to no labour regulations existing within Central America, the workers of the companies are paid wages so low as to force a 120 hour working week, with "flexible hours" forcing workers to start either extremely early in the morning or work the night away, sometimes both at different times in the same week. Defendants of the system claim that the workers can always seek employment elsewhere, however every company offers the same rates. Children almost always find themselves forced into work as young as eight, where they work the most dangerous jobs for the least pay. Overwork is one of the leading causes of adult death, and industrial accidents are the leading cause of the death of young children. Despite this, the yearly pay of each of the Big Three owners is believed to be equal to the GDP of major European countries.
In order to maintain a monopoly upon the websites that citizens could access, Pule Corporation launched the free internet service of EduSurf that eliminated the competition of rival telecommunications providers. The Toll government initially promised to heavily subsidise the service and considered it to be tax exempt as it was officially listed as an educational service. This promise was broken weeks later, after the outbreak of the Great American War lead funds to be directed towards military spending and EduSurf was only allowed to maintain its tax exempt status. Still fully intending to eliminate his competition and limit the knowledge afforded to the population, Bammuch Pule took the initiative to source funding through advertisement. This new approach lead to Pule having to take certain liberties with the censorship that the government had insisted upon being enforced in exchange for funding. In the end, news sites were blocked along with several educational pages while pornographic content and arms markets were freely advertised throughout the service.
Though on paper the various companies have limits on the power they wield, in practice the staggering wealth readily avails itself to systematic corruption of the politics of the Central American Zone. Magistrates with a strong pro-business slant are called into all (rare) cases against the companies. Politicians tend to get appointed based on how favourable they are to the Big Three. It is also theorised that the majority of Toll's assassins in his final years were sent by the very companies he set up after they concluded he had become a dangerous liability and his eccentric nature was threatening their profits.